Two Toronto police officers have been suspended after they allegedly consumed cannabis edibles while on-duty, CTV News Toronto has learned.
Toronto police spokesperson Mark Pugash confirmed that two officers are being investigated by the Professional Standards Committee, which is responsible for “promoting and supporting professionalism,” according to their website.
Multiple sources have told CTV News Toronto that the two officers were doing surveillance in a cruiser near Vaughan Road and Oakwood Avenue at around 1 a.m. on Sunday when they ingested the edibles and reportedly started to hallucinate. At some point, one of the officers left the vehicle prompting the second officer to radio call for help to search the area.
According to a source, a female officer that responded to the call slipped on ice and hit her head while trying to help one of the officers who was reportedly up in a tree. The Toronto Police association confirms that the officer was taken to hospital with a concussion but is now doing okay.
Toronto Police Association president Mike McCormack would not confirm the details of the allegations, but sources have told CTV News Toronto that investigators are also looking into whether the edibles were stolen during a raid on a marijuana dispensary.
The officers in question, identified by sources as Const. Vito Dominelli and Const. Jamie Young, have both been suspended with pay pending the investigation.
“Our professional standards unit is doing the investigation so I’m not going to comment on the investigation, McCormack said.
Dominelli is known for his social media accounts, where he often posts videos of him dancing and lip synching to music while in uniform. As of recently, his Twitter account has been made private and his Instagram account wiped clean.
McCormack said there have been concerns in the past regarding officers’ public social media accounts. McCormack ramped up a campaign last week which blamed Mayor John Tory and Toronto Police Chief Mark Saunders for an increase in wait times on 9-1-1 calls. McCormack has also been vocal on the apparent reduction of front-line officers as part of an ongoing modernization effort of the force.
“It’s very challenging for us when we are facing a crisis on frontline policing and not having enough police officers,” he said. “ I don’t want the public to have the misconception that our officers have nothing to do but be on social media.”